According to Cleveland Browns beat writer Mary Kay Cabot, the team has released former Ticat kicker Brett Maher.
#Browns have released kicker Brett Maher, signed March 20 after 3 seasons in CFL. Drafted K Zane Gonzalez in 7th round out of Arizona State
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) May 2, 2017
Maher had two-thirds of a great season for the Ticats. After 13 weeks, he was third in the CFL with an 87.9 per cent accuracy rate on field goals while missing just one extra point. His 36.0 yard net punting average was good enough for fifth in the CFL. But by the end of the year, Maher’s field goal percentage had dipped to 82 per cent, he was sixth in net punting and his kickoff average had fallen almost two yards a boot. In the East Semi-Final loss to Edmonton, Maher missed a 35 yarder in the second quarter in a game the Ticats would eventually lose by a field goal.
The Ticats had discussions with Maher about returning but were reluctant to offer him much by the way of signing bonus or job security.
The team brought seven kickers to mini-camp last week, including former Winnipeg Blue Bomber Sergio Castillo and ex Buffalo Bill Jordan Gay. Craig Peterson, a 31-year-old who went to training camp with the Redblacks in 2014 Tweeted today that he’d been signed by the club.
— Craig Peterson (@c_peterson19) May 2, 2017
That said, an entry-level deal would not have included a signing bonus so the Ticats could release him before the start of camp with no cap implications (it’s one of the reasons teams don’t announce these deals until closer to camp.)
Given where they are in the process, if Maher does return to the Ticats, it will likely be under the original conditions: with the chance to compete for the job in training camp.